LaGrange artist donates portrait to Edmondson family

Published 11:00 am Friday, April 12, 2024

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A local artist has created a painting to give to the Edmondson family in honor of the late patriarch and former mayor of LaGrange.

Nigel Maddox, 28, painted a portrait of Dr. W. T. Edmondson to be presented to his son Jay Edmondson. The portrait portrays the late mayor in front of the fountain on Lafayette Square.

“It’s kind of like a memorial piece. I wanted to give back to the family because they’ve been so cool with me since I was like a young kid,” Maddox said.

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Maddox said he plans to present the portrait to the family soon. He said he hopes they hang the painting up at the family’s funeral home, Lakes Dunson Robertson, which the former mayor ran for many years before his passing. Jay has since continued in his father’s steps helping run the facility.

The painting took about 25 hours to complete, according to Maddox. The young artist is relatively new to painting. He said he began painting in 2019.

Nigel said he lost his mom last year. Thinking of her pushed him to do the painting.

“Lakes Dunson took care of my mom, that’s just kind of why I wanted to give back to [Jay]  because I know how it goes to lose a parent,” Maddox said.

Maddox said April marks the anniversary of his mother’s passing. He said she passed away on April 2, the day before his birthday.

“I’m watching Lakes Dunson and the coroner comes to take my mom. So instead of me getting happy birthdays, I’m getting I’m sorry and condolences,” Maddox said, noting the funeral home was helpful in the grieving process.

“I [now] understand how the pain of losing a parent feels. So it was kind of my main drive to want to paint the picture,” Maddox said.

“It still hurts. You find moments where you might be good. People ask me all the time, in my heart, I’m like, I’m good. I might be good, but the next second I might be bad. It’s like people told me this roller coaster,” Maddox said.

Maddox finds comfort in creating memorial paintings. He said he painted the design on his car in her honor. 

“The car is a memorial to her. The whole car, the wrap is dedicated to her. She’s under the hood,” he said.